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8 Techniques for Tantalizing and Increasing Their Urge to Buy

by Marcia Yudkin

Ever seen someone's eyes go wide after a glimpse of an important piece of paper that's then snatched back and held out of reach? This can prompt frantic lunges, shameless begging, threats and yelling. 

That kind of desperate desire to see, know and have is something you can trigger with words alone when you know how to tantalize. Your tantalizee attains relief only by purchasing. Ka-ching!

Use the eight tips below to tease your reader, heighten the vividness of what you're selling and ratchet up the intensity of their need to buy.

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1. In bullet points, use enticing hints rather than statements. Start to say something interesting, yet leave out the kicker. You've seen these over and over again in sales letters, and they can be irresistible, can't they? They get your mind whirring but leave the idea incomplete. Here are a few examples so you get the idea:

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2. Cite the number of key points, elements or ingredients. Another classic move in sales letters, this tempts fiercely when the reader can't think of 17 ways to say maybe, or 24 methods of building a birdhouse without nails.

3. Describe a paradox - something that seems contradictory but isn't quite. For instance, copywriting pro Gary Halbert once argued that you can sell your home faster by taking it off the market. 

4. Highlight what is surprising or unexpected. This arouses curiosity. "How Three Words Uttered to a Stranger Earned This Hick From Nowheresville $9,657." "You'll learn as much from the other beginners about success as you will from me - guaranteed." Which ones? Why? How can that be? 

5. Inject emotionality. Whether fear, anger, sadness, compassion or envy, strong feelings carry the reader farther along the road to action. When you make someone care, they are halfway toward doing something to resolve that emotion. Tell little stories. Describe an enemy of the reader. Get the reader remembering emotionally charged incidents.

Learn From the Masters of No-Hype Copywriting
In 2013 and 2014, Marcia Yudkin convened the most articulate and experienced practitioners of no-hype copywriting for an exchange of ideas on writing copy that persuades without excessive showmanship or stretching the truth.  Presenters included Peter Bowerman, Nick Usborne, Shel Horowitz, Karon Thackston and others. Order the recordings from this telesummit.

6. Say what will happen if people don't attend, download or buy. See if you can get creative (though truthful, of course) in stating these consequences. They won't know how to prevent government fines as high as $40,000. They'll experience embarrassment at business meetings and maybe even lose contracts. They'll wake up one morning to discover that deer have nibbled away all the blossoms in their garden. 

7. Provide a catchy name for a method. Ever notice how the names of the most popular diets - the South Beach Diet, SlimFast, the Fat Flush Diet - seem to sell you on them even before you learn the details? Whether you're talking about a way of making furniture, a cooking style or a set of leadership rules, if you have a process for arriving at results, give it a charming name. This stimulates the desire to know more.

8. Make unexpected, captivating comparisons. Instead of just giving the price for a training program, for example, point out that this represents less than what it would cost to treat all the customer service reps to a double latte one morning. Instead of saying they'll have more energy, say they'll feel as exhilarated as a five-year-old kid riding down a hill on a brand-new bicycle.

Do you see how profitable it can be to use your imagination? It's fun, also.

Copyright 2015 Marcia Yudkin.  All rights reserved.

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